Trick or Treat


My friend Barry Green told me of his good friend Kevin Clark. It was Kevin’s first year to pass out candy during Halloween. As the night went on, Kevin ran out of candy. One of the last stragglers rang his bell and Kevin panicked. He looked at the empty candy dish, and then he saw the old “change dish.” Kevin grabbed a handful of coins and dropped them into the kid’s sack as he said, “Happy Halloween.”

To Kevin’s horror, the boy ran to the edge of the front porch and screamed: “He’s giving away mooooooooooooooooooooney!”

I can identify. We used to live on the main trick or treat road in a small town. The first year we were woefully unprepared for the onslaught. Our church had a fall festival at Halloween but I felt bad about not being available to the community when they all came down our street. I didn’t want them to say, “There’s Pastor Bill’s house. He doesn’t like kids.” So I told Amy I would stay for a while and pass out candy. Amy would run the kids to a couple of friends’ to trick or treat, then we’d meet and go to the church.

The spooks and super-heroes came in waves. In a matter of about 15 minutes, my candy bowl was clean. I raced into the kitchen where Amy kept a bowl of assorted candy our sons would get at birthdays and the like. It was pretty picked over. I raced back to the door and passed out the old candy. In a matter of minutes I was out again. The last couple of kids got opened peppermints I had to unstick from the bottom of the bowl.

Amy came back with our boys just as the second bowl ran dry.

When she opened the door the dog ran into the house and straight to the back where the cat had just had 5 new kittens the week before. It grabbed a kitten and killed it right in front of my mortified 5 year old.

So now I have fifty trick or treaters smiling at my doorway, a dead cat and four crying sons. I opened the door and said, “That’s all folks!” The revelers let out a chorus of boos.

Sometimes you can’t win for losing.

Let me remind you of some good news for days like that:

(Jeremiah 29:11) ‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.’

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